Manitoba Parks has shared the following update today.
Water levels remain high throughout Whiteshell Provincial Park. Caddy, Falcon and Star Lakes are reporting a slight decrease in levels today compared to yesterday. Other lakes throughout the park are reporting a slight increase or remaining level.
Nutimik, Dorothy, Margaret, Eleanor, and Sylvia Lakes as well as near the Pointe du Bois subdivision along the Winnipeg River system are expected to continue rising as water moves from Lake of the Woods through the Winnipeg River system. Water levels rise quickly in these areas due to natural restrictions of water along the river. At Pointe du Bois there is now sand and sandbags for cottager owners to fill at the start of the 8 Foot Falls Road. Please bring a shovel.
Manitoba Parks staff are working in conjunction with staff from the department of Manitoba, Transportation and Infrastructure to monitor lake levels and adjust control structures where possible.
A sandbagging machine is making prefilled sandbags for distribution at the Otter Falls Ball Diamond. A larger sand bagging machine is being mobilized here by Thursday to increase production. Once we have enough pre-filled bags to meet capacity in this location bags will be moved throughout the park. Please be careful when attending this location and avoid machinery and staff while working. Cottagers which are looking for a small number of bags and can make their own should come prepared with a shovel.
Sandbags for filling and sand are available for cottage owners at: the 8 Foot Falls Road in Pointe du Bois, the Otter Falls Ball Diamond, across from Nutimik Maintenance Yard, the Betula Ball Diamond, Jessica Lake at the garbage collection site, the parking lot across from Brereton Lake Resort, the West Hawk maintenance yard, and the causeway at Falcon Lake.
PR 307 between Betula Lake and White Lake remains closed. PR 312 near Caddy Lake is closed. Water is still rising in this area. Water is covering the highways on PTH 44 near McGillvray Falls, PR 309 near Meditation Lake, and PR 307 near the Rennie River/ Heart Lake Boat Launch. The PR 309 and PR 307 flooded areas are rough in spots.
The PR307 location is expected to continue to rise over the coming days as the Winnipeg River rises. Any cottagers who are at Betula should be prepared for changing road conditions and the potential that the road may close as water levels deepen. Cottagers should be prepared to stay in place for several days if required.
Water is present on several block roads throughout the park. High Rock Road at West Hawk, Jessica Lake Block 5-6-7-8 and White Lake Block 4 all have larger areas of water on the roadways. Caution should be used when travelling through flooded areas.
The following boat launches are closed: Otter Falls, White Lake, Jessica Lake, Rennie River/ Heart Lake, Nutimik Lake Block 1, Nutimik Campground, Opapiskaw, South Shore Big Whiteshell, Toniata, Brereton Lake North Shore (Inverness Falls), and Falcon Beach Campground. All boat traffic should be cautious of debris and items submerged below the surface.
Manitoba Park staff are aware of a floating bog in Caddy Lake and staff are currently working to remove it on a proactive basis. The bog is not impacting the outflow of Caddy Lake.
To minimize potential erosion caused by boat wakes, recreational motor boat restrictions are in place. Recreational motor boat traffic is prohibited from operating within 100 metres of the shoreline on: West Hawk, Falcon, Caddy, Star, Brereton, Jessica, White, Big Whiteshell, Betula, Nutimik, Dorothy, Margaret and Eleanor Lakes in Whiteshell Provincial Park. When exiting or approaching the shoreline, boats should move directly out from land and avoid creating a wake.
The following hiking trails are closed: Alfred Hole, the Marsh Trail (between Falcon Lake Marina and Beach Campground), TransCanada Trail at Penniac Bay, and Falcon Creek. The Mantario Hiking Trail and Canoe Route is now closed. The Caddy Lake Tunnels along the canoe route are impassable and closed.
All hikers should be prepared to encounter high water especially at McGillivray Falls, Pine Point Rapids and Rainbow Falls. Water is still very cold and extra caution should be used near shorelines.
Campers should check the Manitoba Parks homepage for the status of campgrounds prior to coming to the park. Several campgrounds have full or partial closures.
If cottagers have any questions, concerns or urgent matters regarding the high water please contact Manitoba Parks at 204-340-6769 between 8am and 6pm daily. To report an emergency please contact the RCMP via 911 if located in the South Whiteshell, 204-348-7177 in the North Whiteshell, and 204-345-8685 in Pointe du Bois. Inquires regarding camping or normal operations should can be directed to the regular inquiry line at 1-800-214-6497.
We encourage everyone to check manitoba511.ca before travelling (you can also call 511 anywhere in Manitoba to get updates by phone).